For quite a long time, I couldn’t find a tool sufficient enough to enable me to help my clients with the whole range of their (common) worries about brands and intuitive enough to get them to use it for their work. Even without me. Tools are either too complicated and require that the consultant be present (yes, only the doctor really knows how to use it) or so easily understandable and clear that they don’t work or even do damage. Let’s stick with the doctor metaphor, as it’s quite fitting. What do you do when your leg hurts? You give it some time. Check Google. But then you probably go to see your doctor. Is it serious, doctor? Your doctor is no specialist in legs, but s/he has seen enough patients to be able to tell how serious the situation is. And to help you. Just apply some compresses and keep off of it! Or s/he sends you to a specialist for an examination and it has to be x-rayed, as the doctor isn’t too happy about the way it looks. The specialist will take care of you, and you will bring the results to your doctor. How simple, of course. Well, not in every country, though.
Ok. So why do companies dash to see a specialist with every single minor issue? Why do they hire expensive experts who then cure them in the spirit of their erudition? Well, yes, if you go see a designer, do not expect him/her to make you change your mind about your logo. If you contact a web designer, you’ll get a new website as a medicine. Do not complain – it’s your responsibility. It’s you who don’t know what you want so you seek some solace with specialists! How to do it? Well, have your own family doctor. And what should we call him – a brand manager? Marketing manager? CEO? Up to you. Remember, however, that the higher in the company structure the person – whom you made remember your brand – is, the better. And this person may be also outside this structure as an outsourcing partner; only temporarily, though, as I’d recommend. Teach your own structure to understand your body and soul.
And it’s these family doctors for whom I created my own complex tool to openly treat the most common diseases. Enjoy, have fun, do business. And thus learn. There’s no other way. You can’t find the truth by reading things. If only because there’s no universal truth. If there were any, then it would be too simple. BRAND ABCD then. Simply, clearly, efficiently. And thus, perhaps, also practically. Imagine yourself, not your brand for one more moment. It works better that way.
AIM — aim, purpose. Do you know it? You have it. Maybe unconsciously. But you do. Imagine AIM as if you’re talking to yourself. What I want, what I don’t want, what I like, whom I don’t like, what’s pushing me forward, what I’m afraid of, what I think I can do, what I believe in, what I believe, what I think I’m useful at. And I could go on like this. The key thing is to think about the inner dialog. You don’t tell people what you’re thinking. What people around you hear you say is an interpretation of your thoughts. And just like you’re talking to yourself, which is healthy, let your brand talk to itself, as well. Let it dream, let it worry. How to do it? My Mercedes will help you. Three simple questions with a sackful of difficult answers. Let’s look at it in detail in one of my later posts.
BEHAVE is exactly what the others – those outside of it – take from your inner world. You behave in certain ways, you have some expressions on your face, you are cheerful, sad, courageous? What do the others associate you with most frequently? What are you famous for? The change of perspective is what’s crucial; AIM shows you from inside, while BEHAVE from outside. I’m going to teach you to distinguish between these two levels. Most companies collapse as early as in this phase, as they’re unable to distinguish between inner attitudes and outer displays. And, again, I can help you with structure using a specific tool. Psychology helps us here again; it’s based on two concepts I crossbred for my purposes in order to stick another one on them. And only then was I satisfied with it. You don’t understand? It’s fine, more details some other time.
CO-EXIST arrives when you know what you want and how others perceive you. Others. Time to think about them. You see, it’s only now that you’re prepared for them inside. This is how I lead my clients. Most of them begin with the others, often calling them target groups. Most of my clients switch to the brand community terminology and, mainly, my clients deal with their communities only after they put everything in order inside themselves. Even this process is a predmoniantly healing one for a number of brands. And for people too. Why communities and not target groups? I see a problem in both these words: target = I aim at them, I’d like to hit them. Our target group is formed by women 35–45 living in small towns. Cool. First, I’d quite likely successfully destroy this definition, but mainly I thus very likely lose a realistic view of my clients, and I miss the potential. Which is what’s problematic with the second word – group. Herd. Flock. Women to the left, men to the right. No, no. I’ll search for the context your brand appears in. Whom it influences, and who influences it. This is why we’ll be interested in communities, and we’ll be looking for what interconnects them. And we’d like to find more than just the fact that they buy your products.
DO! Finally! Let’s get to work! You know what you want, what you’re like, and who you have around so it’s time to get some action. As the last preparation I’m going to prescribe the ancient 4 P’s from 1960. Yes, so many modern tools, so many books, and in the end it all comes down to the 4 P’s. Trust me, you’ll find them sufficient and helpful enough. Use them to set up the key for your communication and to realize how to distinguish your communication from the others. You remember? Price, Product, Place, Promotion. Well, and in the final phase you can start with specific activities. At this point what we call an activation round will be applied. Should we go for on-line? How? Press advertising? Remember the beginning with the doctor. Now, you should be thoroughly prepared for choosing the correct specialist or doctor. You should already know who you need and, mainly, what you need from him/her. That’s the only way for you to measure the correctness of the solution offered and thus optimize the whole of your marketing. Your brand world. DO! My friends, DO!
Ok, you got it? You understand? Don’t worry if you don’t. And I’m excited if you do! Either way I’m going to deal with all this again and again in detail, in examples and exercises. Stay tuned, stay branded!